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APLOMB

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APLOMB

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sun Aug 26, 2007 11:14 pm

• aplomb •

Pronunciation: ê-plahm, ê-plêmHear it!

Part of Speech: Noun, mass (no plural)

Meaning: Composure, confidence, coolness, self-control.

Notes: Today's Good Word is an absolute lexical orphan without a single relative: no related adjective or verb. It is a distant historical relative of plumber (see Word History) but neither of these words is derived from the other. Keep an eye on the final B. English doesn't like the cluster MB and only the M is pronounced unless they fall into discrete syllables as in the case of number. Notice that the B is not pronounced in the comparative form of numb (numb-er), but it is in the noun meaning "a cipher", where the syllable break is between the M and B: num-ber.

In Play: Wherever composure and self-confidence are required, look for aplomb: "Miranda played the Mozart fugue with great aplomb and remarkable dexterity." It does, however, emerge in situations where you might not expect it: "Leticia responded to the post-party mess throughout her house with great aplomb, never once losing her temper."

Word History: Today's Good Word goes back to an Old French phrase a plomb "(aligned) with the plumb bob" from plomb "lead, plumb bob". Its sense derives from the use of a lead weight at the end of a string to measure a perfectly vertical line. Anything that is plumb with the bob is perfectly upright and well aligned. French plomb "lead" comes from Latin plumbum and turns up in several English words. Most of these words have to do with plumbing, which originally consisted of lead pipes held together by lead joints. Since the discovery of lead poisoning, plumbers have shifted to plastic pipes with cemented joints.
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Re: APLOMB

Postby gailr » Mon Aug 27, 2007 3:39 am

Keep an eye on the final B. English doesn't like the cluster MB and only the M is pronounced unless they fall into discrete syllables as in the case of number.

In Play: Wherever composure and self-confidence are required, look for aplomb: "Miranda played the Mozart fugue with great aplomb and remarkable dexterity."


Thus, Miranda's mad music skillz are da bom(b).
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Postby Bailey » Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:52 am

Gailr, how old did you say you were again?

mark What?-she-sounds-like-she's-13-in-1995 Bailey

Da-BOMB IS SO LAST CENTURY. LOL

Today is the first day of the rest of your life, Make the most of it...
kb








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Postby skinem » Mon Aug 27, 2007 9:53 am

For shizzle...

I had always wondered if there was a connection between aplomb and plumb(bob)...obviously not enough to find out, but I had wondered!
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Postby gailr » Mon Aug 27, 2007 10:49 am

Bailey wrote:Gailr, how old did you say you were again?

I didn't. :wink:


Da-BOMB IS SO LAST CENTURY. LOL

My circle of acquaintances comprises 20-to-60 year-olds who use all the slang dear to 20-to-60 year-olds. You never know what word one of them will bust out.
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